In late 2020, Ardnamurchan distillery had finally released their first legal whisky after a few batches of previews (AD/2016 to AD/2019) and it’s always exciting to have a new distillery reviewed here.
I tasted the two kinds of new make from Ardnamurchan – one peated and one unpeated and liked them very much. Therefor it’s no surprise I was eager to taste their proper whisky and seems like I wasn’t alone as the first batch flew off the shelves and now there’s a new batch AD/01.21:01.
But let’s focus on the first batch, AD/09.20:01. It was distilled in 2014/2015 and was bottled on 22/09/2020, so basically it’s a 5 year old whisky. It’s a 50:50 mix of peated and unpeated spirit matured in bourbon and sherry casks – 65% in Bourbon & 35% in PX & Oloroso Sherry Casks.
Those batches are bottled at 46.8% and their retail price is about £45-£50 (if you manage to get one when they come out that is).
Ardnamurchan AD/09.20:01 (46.8%, 15978 bottles)
Nose: Oily with the expected honey and vanilla notes of a young whisky, very gentle earthy peat. There’s a very shy side for the sherry casks, with restrained red fruitiness that strengthen over time, also some soursweet berries (raspberry) and more vanilla.
Palate: Peat, smoke, honey, muted spices sharpness, red apples with peels, slightly thinner than the nose, coals and a little spirity and plasticine notes as well.
Finish: Medium length, lingering peat smoke, oak spice, honey and pink lady apples.
Thoughts: Very decent whisky for its age. The nose leads over the Palate which happens a lot with young whiskies but the foundations are solid and the structure is promising. I expect their older core range that will arrive in a few years to be excellent. In the meanwhile we can take solace in those batches and single casks.